Career Programs

At the Hoffman Estates Playhouse, we offer progressive career programs to adults 18 and older. The goals of our career programs are to increase self-confidence, increase career skill knowledge, increase personal wellness, and increase the quality of life of our participants.

To start off the career programs journey, participants enroll in GiGi Prep. GiGi Prep is a 10 week introductory program designed to introduce the participants to the idea of having a career. Our adults learn how to set a SMART goal, and the importance of doing so, communication skills, teamwork skills, and money counting. The participants also receive GiGiFIT and GiGi Kitchen which are paired with nutrition lessons about making healthy choices and the importance of portion control. Each participant in GiGi Prep receives a binder where they keep their program materials, keep track of their weekly SMART goals, and their food & water logs for each day.

If you are interested in starting your career path, enrollment is now open for our Spring session! GiGi Prep runs on Wednesdays and Fridays from 11:00AM-3:00PM starting February 6th and runs until April 28th.
To apply click on this link:

After GiGi Prep, participants move on to GiGiU. GiGiU is a 15 week program for adults who have mastered the skills in GiGi Prep and are ready for the next steps in their career journey. The participants emphasizes building communication, interviewing, resume writing, money management, public speaking, customer service, fine motor, team building, and wellness skills. In GiGiU, our adults will also get GiGiFIt and GiGi Kitchen to continue the nutrition and wellness lessons. Just like in GiGi Prep, the adults receive binders in which they are responsible for food & water logs, fitness tracking, weekly SMART goals, and any homework that may be assigned.

The Spring session of GiGiU will run on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 9:00AM-1:00PM. It starts on Monday, January 16th and runs through Friday, April 28th.

Depending on the career goals of each participant, there are two different tracks that they can go into. If they are more interested in building their office and administrative skills, the participants will enroll in GiGi Professional. Each individual will purposefully progress through certifications learning and demonstrating strengths and interests in transferable job skills and building their resume for the placement in a job or volunteer position in the community. The certifications that the participants work on are Work Readiness, Professionalism, Administrative Skills, Program Support, Marketing/Development, Finance, Technology, and becoming a Self Advocate. If the adult would rather enter more of a customer service based employment or volunteer opportunity, they enter the Hugs & Mugs program. Hugs & Mugs is GiGi’s studio café where they serve gelato, coffee and teas, along with GiGi’s Playhouse merchandise. Hugs & Mugs also gives the adults a chance to learn how to create custom mugs, water bottles, keychains, and other items through our designability lab.

The interns and Hugs & Mugs learn to complete tasks through a task list, gaining skills needed in order to be employed at a restaurant, hospital, nursing home, retail store, and many other locations. The interns also learn how to work a register, making change, and completing customers transactions. Just like in GiGi Professionals, the interns at Hugs & Mugs work their way through certifications such as Work Readiness, Professionalism, Counting Money, Point of Sale, Shipping, Fulfillment, Product Development, and Product Presentation. The goal of being an intern at Hugs & Mugs is to learn the skills to independently be able to work or volunteer in the community.  

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